05 January 2016

Best of 2015: All Yours (David Lambert)

All Yours (Je suis à toi). David Lambert. Belgium/Canada.

Shamefully overlooked by the mainstream film festival circuit as well as the LGBT ones, All Yours is Belgian filmmaker David Lambert’s bold and arresting follow-up to his well-regarded, more widely seen debut feature Beyond the Walls (Hors les murs), which premiered at Cannes back in 2012 and enjoyed a healthy festival run at gay fests across the globe. Perhaps due to a spoiler-y plot detail that arrives in the film’s third act, the gay festivals (in the U.S., at least) shied away from All Yours, and while lead actor Nahuel Pérez Biscayart (Glue) was rightfully awarded the Best Actor prize at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, All Yours didn’t see the mainline festival run it deserved following its premiere at Karlovy Vary.

As a brash, desperate hustler from Argentina who accepts an invitation to become the live-in boyfriend of a much older baker (Jean-Michel Balthazar, a regular of the Dardenne brothers) in Belgium, Biscayart is sensational, and like the protagonist in Beyond the Walls, Biscayart’s Lucas is a deeply complicated, impulsive, and frustrating figure, one you don’t often see at the center of a film… and one that’s hard to keep your eyes off. Rounding out the sad bizarre love triangle is the Audrey (Monia Chokri of Xavier Dolan’s Heartbeats), a guarded young mother who works at the bakery.

Visually audacious and dramatically complex, All Yours should have announced Lambert as a visionary filmmaker on the rise, but as I’ve expressed many times before, I never quite seem to have my finger on the pulse. In the U.S., All Yours is currently streaming on both Netflix and Hulu from Breaking Glass Pictures for your viewing pleasure; it currently doesn’t have distribution in the U.K. Outplay Films released Je suis à toi theatrically in France earlier this year.

With: Nahuel Pérez Biscayart, Jean-Michel Balthazar, Monia Chokri, Augustin Legrand, Anne-Marie Loop, Achille Ridolfi

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